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Sunday, December 3, 2023


Under the guidance of its new director of annual giving, the University of the Virgin Islands is embarking on a drive to educate the public about options and advantages in giving as part of their estate planning.
Among the topics to be addressed in seminars planned for St. Croix and St. Thomas are wills and bequests and the benefits of planned giving.
Deborah S. Hamilton, UVI's first director of annual giving, says she believes most Virgin Islands residents, like most people everywhere, "want an opportunity to leave a better world for their children and grandchildren. They would like to preserve their values for future generations. They would like to exit with grace, being remembered for what they gave, not what they got."
And, she adds, "They would like to leave a legacy so the fact that they lived on this planet will continue to make a difference."
People who have worked hard throughout life to become successful and prosper don't want to their worth to die when they die, Hamilton says: "We want to be significant as well as successful."
That makes it all the more ironic, she adds, that "roughly half of Americans die without wills or trusts."
UVI is embarking on a community outreach effort in hopes of changing that situation locally. "As a beginning, we have asked attorneys Linda Baxter and Marjorie Roberts to conduct free public seminars to give the Virgin Islands community some basic information regarding wills, bequests and the benefits of making planned gifts," Hamilton said.
Baxter will conduct the first seminar, to be held on the UVI St. Croix campus at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 21, in Room 133 of the Research and Extension Services Center. Roberts will lead the second, a repeat of the first, which will take place on the St. Thomas campus at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 26, in the second-floor meeting room of the new Sports and Fitness Center.
As seating is limited at both venues, those wishing to take part are asked to reserve space by Thursday, Feb. 15. This may be done by telephoning Hamilton on St. Thomas at 693-1042 or Stella Saunders on St. Croix at 692-4023. Reservations may also be requested via e-mail to Hamilton at dhamilt@uvi.edu. If you e-mail, be sure to specify which seminar you wish to attend.
"Whether a person's estate is large or small, here is an opportunity many will not want to miss to learn how to transform their success into lasting significance," Hamilton says. "We hope that many will take steps today to leave a legacy for tomorrow."

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